Israel at the UN: Iran preaching morality 'absurd'

Shalev responds to Teheran's protest against "dangerous" remarks by Eitan, Barak.

September 11, 2008 02:17
1 minute read.
Israel at the UN: Iran preaching morality 'absurd'

ahmadinejad finger 224 8. (photo credit: AP)

Israel responded to an Iranian protest against "dangerous" comments from its ministers on Wednesday, saying it was "absurd" for a country whose president has repeatedly called for Israel's destruction to preach morality. Iran's UN Ambassador Mohammad Khazee sent a letter Tuesday to the UN secretary-general protesting threats from Israeli ministers to kidnap President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and to use force against the Islamic Republic. "These dangerous threats ... not only constitute manifest violations of international law and contravene the most fundamental principles of the Charter of the United Nations, but are against the basic values of the civilized world," Khazee said. Israel's new UN ambassador, Gabriela Shalev, responded in a statement saying: "It is absurd that Iran preaches morality to Israel." "Iran's president repeatedly denies the Holocaust and calls - again and again - for the destruction of the state of Israel," she said. Shalev said Ahmadinejad leads a country "that develops nuclear capabilities endangering the entire world." "As such, Iran is under United Nations sanctions for its non-compliance with the international community," she said. "Furthermore, Iran openly and actively supports and arms terrorist organizations." Shalev urged the UN Security Council to remain "actively seized" of the Iranian nuclear issue and the country's failure to comply with other international norms "in order to halt Iran's threats against Israel and the world." In his letter to Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Khazee referred to comments Tuesday by Pensioners Minister and former Mossad agent Rafi Eitan that kidnapping Ahmadinejad was "an acceptable option" and to comments on Sept. 3 by Defense Minister Ehud Barak repeating the threat to use force against Iran. "While the Islamic Republic of Iran has never threatened other nations," he said it "would not hesitate to act in self-defense to respond to any attack against the Iranian nation and to take appropriate defensive measures to protect itself, its people and its officials." Khazee called for "a resolute and clear response" by the Security Council to the Israeli threats and said the council's failure to respond to previous Israeli threats only encouraged Israel to make new threats.

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